Greek baby names are always very interesting. Why? Not only are they an interesting challenge for most of us to pronounce, they are always symbolic of something. Baby names from the Greek culture have very clear meanings, and often those names are chosen specifically because of the meanings, not because of the way the name sounds. When you are choosing names from the Greek tradition, it’s all about the heritage!
Greek baby names often follow the gods of mythology. They also pay homage to the heroes of the Iliad, one of the earliest works from ancient Greek literature, or are derived from the basic meanings of certain words, such as “Adonia” meaning “beautiful”. Greek culture has a long and storied history, and all of that past has come to bear on the present with baby names that are both beautiful and carefully chosen to reflect the hopes of a parent for their child.
Names like Adonis, Aeolus, and Calypso come from Greek mythology. Some names, like Calliope or Callista, are focused on the beauty of the person. Some reflect the person the parents hope their child will become, such as Elexa, known as Mankind’s helper. Others, such as Electra – which means the bright light of the sun – are meant to convey the beauty of the world around them.
Some names, on the other hand, might not be a good idea unless you have a very good reason, such as a family history. These names convey things that most people would never want to associate with their child! One that comes to mind is “Acheron”, which means “River of sorrow or woe”. Another is “Aglauros”, a woman who was turned to stone by Hermes.
There are names that have become very popular not only because of their Greek meanings, but because the names were associated with famous people. Take, for instance, Agatha. The name Agatha means “good” and was derived from the name of the third century Christian martyr. The name became very popular over time and joined the list of popular mainstream names thanks to mystery writer Agatha Christie.
A very popular Greek name is any version of Nicholas. Baby girls might be named Nichola, a derivative of the masculine form. Why Nicholas? Not only does it mean “people’s victory”, St. Nicholas was the patron saint of children. Jolly Old St. Nick, or Santa Claus, was based on the life and work of St. Nicholas. What baby wouldn’t like to grow with the name of a kind and generous person who is loved throughout the world?
So let’s review the eleven baby name possibilities that we’ve discussed here: Adonia, Adonis, Aeolis, Calypso, Calliope, Callista, Elexa, Electra, Agatha, Nicholas, and Nichola.
Greek names are hardly ever simple names, either in spelling or in meaning. They always have a story behind them, and that’s one of the things that makes Greek baby names so valuable to those who bear them. At the very least, someone with a Greek name will always have an interesting story to tell at dinner parties when they are asked how they came into such an unusual moniker!
Greek baby names are perfect for those who want to bring an ancient heritage forward into the modern world. What Greek baby name do you like best for your little one?